Affordable housing takes out a road
“Kishigo Lane is expected to be transformed into a landscaped, open space reflecting Indigenous placekeeping and design elements to honour the road’s namesake – an Anishnaabe family that lived in the area in the late 18th century. It’s part of the project’s goal to expand more public space and parks.”
“The development objectives are 300 residential units, of which 50 per cent are affordable housing and 50 per cent are market housing. There will also be new parking, new retail, and the childcare centre will expand capacity from 26 spaces to 62.”
With the pandemic eliminating jobs and work hours, the threat or reality of homelessness is hitting more and more people each day. Affordable housing was already an issue, but now it has become even more urgent to provide options for the growing number of Toronto residents who simply cannot afford to keep a roof over their heads. A lucky few will actually be able to do so by the end of this year, as developments, designed and reserved for low-income hopefuls pop up in a number of neighbourhoods
The problem is, that there are a few voices in each neighborhood who are loudly shouting “Not in my backyard”. The latest Facebook debate over the development of affordable housing in the east end of Toronto is only one of many. Most people (with a heart) are in full support of housing the struggling citizens of the city, but the selfish exceptions, NIMBYs, for short, tend to be the loudest. The rest of the residents are just ashamed of how the attitude of the neighborhood is being portrayed. They don’t want to be lumped in with these people who think that they are too good to live beside fellow human beings who can’t afford a house with a backyard.
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Story Two – corner of Trenton and Cedarvale Ave. in East York’s Stan Wadlow neighbourhood.
Toronto residents are pushing back against plans to build a modular housing development on the lot at the corner of Trenton and Cedarvale Ave. in East York’s Stan Wadlow neighbourhood.
The NIMBYs who live near the Stan Wadlow Park development are concerned that putting housing in a local parking lot will make it impossible for people who live in, or visit, the neighbourhood to find parking. They are concerned that their precious children will be exposed to ne’er do wells, drug dealers, gang influence, violence, people suffering from addiction/mental illness, and people who are generally unstable.
“This parking lot is a hub; it’s the heart of the community”, claims one resident, about the empty pad of pavement in the background. If the parking lot isn’t there, the residents are going to be stuck using the park and community center? Instead of standing around on bland cement smoking and drinking, they could attend the neighbouring elementary school, go for a swim, or join the community baseball league? How is a parking lot the heart of the community? And, despite the statements to the contrary,
A recent Facebook post highlighted a piece on Global News in which some residents are up in arms about the city’s announcement to replace a community parking lot with affordable housing for 64 people exiting homelessness. They are protesting the development, even though the city has already approved it. The angry residents claim that there was no consultation beforehand, but this is a city parking lot. The city doesn’t require permission from the residents to move forward.
There will be a meeting, during which residents can state their case regarding the design and specifics of the plans, in hopes that they will be taken into consideration, and will be possible with the building requirements. The City says claims they didn’t have time to consult with the area residents,, as the housing funding will be lost if it’s not used by the end of the year. That means the site has to be approved, inspected and built with enough time to fill the units before the end of December.
By Melissa Peters
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